Recceswinth (Gothic: Raikaswinþs), or Reccesuinth, Recceswint, Reccaswinth, Recesvinto (Spanish, Galician and Portuguese), Recceswinthus, Reccesvinthus, Recesvindus (Latin); was the Visigothic King of Hispania, Septimania and Galicia in 649–672: jointly with his father Chindaswinth from 649 and as sole king from 653.
For 19 years (653–672) Recceswinth governed his people with such success that the Visigothic Kingdom enjoyed unbroken peace — except for a brief rebellion of the Vascons, led by a Gothic noble named Froya. As Recceswinth has the story told, they penetrated as far as Saragossa, and committed great atrocities. There, however, they were totally defeated by Recceswinth. Froya was captured and put to death.
Beginning in 654 Recceswinth was responsible for the promulgation of a law code to replace the Breviary of Alaric; he placed a Visigothic common law over both Goths and Hispano-Romans in the kingdom. However, this Liber Judiciorum showed little Germanic influence, adhering more closely to the old Roman laws.
In his general law code of 654, King Recceswinth outlawed a set of essential Jewish practices, including circumcision of males, dietary laws (kashrut), marriage laws and ceremonies, and the celebration of Passover.
Moreover, the church councils in the capital became the most powerful force in the government and the bishops the primary support of the monarchy. Will Durant writes in The Age of Faith: "By their superior education and organization they dominated the nobles who sat with them in the ruling councils of Toledo; and though the king's authority was theoretically absolute, and he chose the bishops, these councils elected him, and exacted pledges of policy in advance."
- It is spelled Recceswinth in the Encyclopædia Britannica, vol. 7, p. 328: "Liber Judiciorum". Chicago, 1989.
- Henry Bradley, The story of the Goths: from the earliest times to the end of the Gothic dominion in Spain, G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1903.
- John Edwards, The Spain of the Catholic Monarchs, 1474-1520 (Wiley-Blackwell, 2000), p. 72.
- Karen Eva Carr, Vandals to Visigoths: rural settlement patterns in early Medieval Spain (University of Michigan Press, 2002), p. 33.
- (Spanish) Coins of King Recceswinth
|King of the Visigoths
with Chindaswinth (649–653)
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